When Flame Resistant Clothing Can Make A Difference
Industries and jobs where people are working around heat and fire can be dangerous, and wearing the right protective equipment is crucial to staying safe. Sometimes that means a lot of safety equipment, and other times it means flame-resistant clothing is part of your everyday attire.
Flame-Resistant Versus Fireproof
The first thing you need to understand is that flame-resistant clothing is not fireproof. The difference between the materials that make up the clothing is very significant. Flame-resistant clothing will withstand specific amounts of heat without igniting, but it can still burn. Under enough heat and direct flame, the chemical treatment on the cloth can still burn away, but it takes a lot of heat and exposure for that to happen.
Fireproof clothing is made specifically so it does not burn. Using materials like Nomex or Kevlar to make the clothing helps make the clothing fireproof. Still, in most cases, the material will also have metallic materials like aluminum blended in to make it reflect the heat.
Authentic fireproof clothing is hard to find and is typically used for very specific work like chemical firefighting or working with large blast furnaces and smelters.
Fire-Resistant Clothing Required
Some jobs require the clothing you wear to be fire-resistant. Firefighters' work clothing is often made from cloth that is treated for fire resistance so that they have an additional layer of protection beyond their personal protective equipment. The clothing needs to be light and comfortable and still perform well to help keep the firefighter safe while they work.
Another job that requires fire-resistance clothing is race car drivers and their crews. You see them on television with their matching suits that look stylish and all match, but those suits are made from fire-resistant materials to help protect the driver or the crew from a fire in the event of an accident on the track on in the pits.
Welders and people working in jobs that require them to use tools that put out a lot of heat, sparks, or flames can also benefit from fire-resistant clothing. If you are in close contact with the sparks or fire on a job, protecting yourself is critical. The clothing will eventually burn if the fire gets hot enough, but the protection the clothing provides typically gives the person wearing it time to retreat to safety.
Providing Fire-Resistant Clothing
If you have employees that can benefit from the additional protection of fire-resistant clothing, it is worth the cost of the clothing to issue it to them. The safety and insurance benefits can be good for the company, and your employees will appreciate you giving them the tools to do their job safely.
To learn more about flame-resistant clothing, contact a company in your area like Oil & Gas Safety Supply.